Cyprus, Israel and Greece sign MoU on energy and water

Meet your new economic foundations of the European Union: Cyprus and Greece. From this point, it seems they are not likely to be kicked out of the union and could become part of the upcoming United States of Europe.

Cyprus, Israel and Greece have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on cooperation in the fields of energy and water.

Speaking after the signing of the MoU, Cyprus Minister of Energy, Commerce, Industry and Tourism Yiorgos Lakkotrypis said “this is a monumental moment for the cooperation among the three countries”.

“The MoU is a framework which will determine the number of activities that the countries have agreed to jointly pursue, such as energy security supply, environmental concerns and a number of other issues which are common for us three”, he added.Lakkotrypis further said that during their meeting they also discussed the potential project of interconnecting the three countries with an electric cable.

“We have reiterated our commitment to try to see and facilitate the project through, especially since it’s a project of common interest of the European Commission”, he pointed out, adding that “through this project we aim that we will lift Cyprus’ energy isolation, something which will help the country become more competitive by introducing cheaper electricity”.

Replying to a question about other future projects, Lakkotrypis said there were three projects of common interest, initially approved by the European Commission. According to the Cypriot minister, the first is the connection of an electricity cable between the three countries, the second is the feasibility of a pipeline from the East Mediterranean to Europe via Greece and the third one is the gas storage pipeline that will enhance the strategic resources of Cyprus, Israel and other European countries such as Greece.

Asked to comment on the delineation of the Exclusive Economic Zones of Lebanon and Israel, he said he would rather not comment on discussions between two other countries.

These initiatives, he noted, “contribute decisively to the improvement of energy security for Europe, a fact that undoubtedly reinforces Greece and Cyprus geopolitically as EU member states and promotes and consolidates in the most practical and result oriented ways the cooperation of our three countries regionally and internationally”.

“I especially attach importance to the inclusion in the European Union projects of common interest of a natural gas pipeline that will connect Cyprus to Crete and continental Greece as well as the high tension electric cable between Israel, Cyprus, Crete and continental Greece”, Maniatis said.

This, he explained, “signifies that priority will be given to the relevant studies with a reduction of up to 40% in the time it will take to complete the project and better financing opportunities from international banks”.

Replying to a question about specific energy related moves that might take place during the Greek Presidency of the Council of the European Union, (in the first six months of 2014), he said that energy issues are of great priority for the Greek Presidency.

Full article: Cyprus, Israel and Greece sign MoU on energy and water (Famagusta Gazette)

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